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Informational Masking

 I've also noticed what a complex phenomenon this information-masking is,
compared to signal-masking. If my wife speaks to me when I'm trying to fix
this blessed computer, it can take me 15 minutes to respond! (if at all).
I'm not just being facetious here; I seem to observe that it is possible to
'store' apparently (fairly) unprocessed 'sound chunks', and 're-listen' to
them a short time later, and *only then* understand them.
Obviously I'm mixing two (or more!) different phenomena here, but it's not
the selective attention / selective inattention that I'm most interested in,
in this case. It's this 'short-term buffer' that is interesting, as it may
be the same thing that assist in 'understanding' complex auditory scenes,
and speech, for that matter.
Is there much work on this?
Peter Lennox
Hardwick House
tel: (0114) 2661509
e-mail: peter@lennox01.freeserve.co.uk
or:- ppl100@york.ac.uk